The Law of Consecration

Doctrine and Covenants 42:30–36

30 And behold, thou wilt remember the poor, and consecrate of thy properties for their support that which thou hast to impart unto them, with a covenant and a deed which cannot be broken.
31 And inasmuch as ye impart of your substance unto the poor, ye will do it unto me; and they shall be laid before the bishop of my church and his counselors, two of the elders, or high priests, such as he shall appoint or has appointed and set apart for that purpose.
32 And it shall come to pass, that after they are laid before the bishop of my church, and after that he has received these testimonies concerning the consecration of the properties of my church, that they cannot be taken from the church, agreeable to my commandments, every man shall be made accountable unto me, a steward over his own property, or that which he has received by consecration, as much as is sufficient for himself and family.
33 And again, if there shall be properties in the hands of the church, or any individuals of it, more than is necessary for their support after this first consecration, which is a residue to be consecrated unto the bishop, it shall be kept to administer to those who have not, from time to time, that every man who has need may be amply supplied and receive according to his wants.
34 Therefore, the residue shall be kept in my storehouse, to administer to the poor and the needy, as shall be appointed by the high council of the church, and the bishop and his council;
35 And for the purpose of purchasing lands for the public benefit of the church, and building houses of worship, and building up of the New Jerusalem which is hereafter to be revealed—
36 That my covenant people may be gathered in one in that day when I shall come to my temple. And this I do for the salvation of my people.

President Joseph Fielding Smith wrote:

“In this revelation the law of consecration is stated definitely as the law on which the New Jerusalem is to be built. This law is given for the benefit of the poor, for the building of Zion, and the work of the ministry. The members of the Church should consecrate their properties, and then be appointed stewards in the service of the Lord. All surplus property was to be placed in the storehouse to be used as the Lord should direct, under the guidance of the bishop. We are informed that the high priests and elders were to assist the bishop and his counselors. Let it be remembered that at this time (1831) the full organization of the Church had not been revealed, and some temporary arrangements were necessary until the full and complete organization should be established. Through this celestial law (consecration) the Saints are to become the covenant people of the Lord. We cannot enter into the fulness of the covenants pertaining to Zion until we have reached the point where we can live such a divine law. Those who cannot abide the law of tithing cannot partake of this law of consecration, or the higher law, and they will be deprived of an inheritance when the inheritances are divided.”

(Church History and Modern Revelation, 2 vols. [1953], 1:185.)

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